Maine Lawmakers OK Budget Seeking to End Government Shutdown

Maine's government shutdown entered its third day on Monday, July 3, 2017, as union members hold a rally across from the Maine State House in Augusta, Maine.

Photographer: Patrick Whittle/AP Photo

Augusta, Maine (AP) -- The Maine Legislature has approved a budget in a move designed to end a state government shutdown that has stretched into its fourth day.

Votes came early Tuesday after a long day of negotiating Monday. The House of Representatives passed the spending plan 147-2, easily exceeding a needed two-thirds majority. The Senate approved by a count of 35-0.

The spending plan now moves to Republican Gov. Paul LePage for possible signature. LePage has said he'll sign a budget agreement that doesn't raise taxes. The agreement approved by the Legislature removes a plan to increase a state lodging tax.

The government shut down on Saturday morning because of the lack of a budget. State leaders squabbled over education funding, taxes on high earners and the lodging tax.

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